In the 70s, my elder brother and roommate Jig would bug me occasionally by singing at the top of his lungs, songs from the Pinoy band, Hotdog. His particular favorite was PERS LAB. "'Di na makatulog, 'di pa makakain. Tagihawat sa ilong, pati na sa pisngi...," he would screech. Little did I know, I would be haunted for the rest of my life by that song but more so by this tagihawat business.
I do not know if this is a genetic thing, but it seems some members of the family have been plagued by bad cases of acne. I had thought that in my forties I would have seen the end of it. Not. These days the dreaded pimples make their home specifically on my nose, chin and shoulders. Not as many as they used to be during my adolescent years but certainly as irritating.
Even my sisters have not been spared. Audrey would drop by her derma during lunch when a breakout occurs, and Monique has been told that the fluoride in her toothpaste has been the culprit all these years. My case is strange. There would be long periods of time when my skin would be flawless (relatively at least) and months when it would seem the acne would never leave me be. As a result, I have resorted to a facial scrub and tea tree oil.
Believe me, I've tried all the medications out there. And though benzoyl peroxide is a potent chemical in eradicating acne, I hate the way it bleaches everything from my shirt to the bathroom towels (Eileen--remember the orange spot on the beige carpet in Shane's room at your old apartment? Now you know.). Tea tree, on the other hand, dries the pimple but moisturizes the skin (if that makes any sense) without the crazy bleaching. In the years I've been using it, I've not damaged any fabric--oh, what a relief.
The Body Shop has several products created using tea tree oil. The pure thing in the tiny vial is my favorite though I've recently discovered a tiny stick that you can keep in you pocket during those days when you need to apply more frequently.
Such juvenile concerns! Oh well, my high school homecoming (25 years!) is in 2 months, and it doesn't hurt to look your best during these occasions. So I have a vial of tea tree oil on standby in my bathroom. You know, I've realized recently that things 25 years ago seem to have remained almost unchanged today. My battle with acne is just one of many.